current topology and current focus

I think I’ve figured out part of the problem I’ve been having.  I haven’t been entirely focused on my studies, and I don’t really have a set goal right now.  I’ve been dancing with the idea of skipping the CCNP and going straight to the IE written.  Because of that, I’ve been reading chapters in the IE written exam certification guide, chapters in the BCMSN gook, and still reviewing notes, videos, and chapters from the BSCI studies.

With the way work has been going, I haven’t had as much time to study at work, and I don’t have the office space/time to study at home.  I live in a small apartment, and my rack is sitting in my living room.  I may need to bit the bullet and pay for the power consumption to leave the rack running at night.  I can stay an extra hour or so at work after hours to study quietly and access the rack from work.

Either way, I AM going to go for the NP.  I’m spending the next week or so going back through my written notes, watching videos again, and reading chapters in the BSCI book over the next week or so.  I bought the BSCI Lab Portfolio a month or so ago, so I’ll spend the next week going through those labs at night.

The physical topology for the bulk of the labs has four routers and one switch.

These are the routers and switch that I’ve added to the mix.  At some point, I know the lab guide will add the frame switch and possibly another router.  I need to pick up a few extra WIC-1T cards soon.

I made it through the first few EIGRP labs, tonight.  The objectives were pretty basic…

1.  Configure EIGRP on an interface.  simple

r1# configure terminal

r1(config)# int eth fa 0/0

r1(config-if)# ip addr 10.1.100.1 255.255.255.0

r1(config-if)# router eigrp 1

r1(config-router)# network 10.0.0.0

2.  Configure the bandwidth command to limit EIGRP bandwidth

r1(config-if)# bandwidth 64 ! bandwidth in kbps

3.  Verify EIGRP adjacencies

r1# show ip eigrp neighbors

or the alternative and more verbose

r1# show ip eigrp neighbors detail

4.  Utilize debugging commands for troubleshooting EIGRP

r1#  debug eigrp packets ! don’t forget to issue no debug all afterwords.

5.  Challenge:  test convergence for EIGRP when a topology change occurs.

This one was kinda weird.  The preferred path from R3 to a loopback on R1 is going to be via fast ethernet.  The lab has you ping from R3 to lo 3 on R1 with 100,000 pings(this is done using the ping $ip repeat 100000 command).  During these pings, you are to kill R1’s FA interface.  We haven’t modified the variance in EIGRP, and the AD through R2’s serial interface to R1 is more than the FD to lo 3, so the route doesn’t exist in the topology table.

When we killed FA 0/0 on R1, we obviously lost six pings while EIGRP discovered the new route through R2.  What confused me, was when I brought FA 0/0 back up on R1, we lost 33 or 34 pings while while the route through R1’s FA port came back up.

I’ll make it through the remaining EIGRP labs tomorrow night, and hopefully I’ll get through the OSPF labs.  I know there is going to be some slight re-cabling to bring the frame switch back into the mix.  I just hope I have enough WIC-1T interfaces to cover the physical topology change.

ugh…

I hate it when I cut cables wrong and don’t check them before I need to use them. I cut a T1 x-over cable for the T1 WICs I have sitting around and didn’t bother to check it. I went to use it tonight and I have the wrong 4/5 pin pair. All of my tools are at work, so I’m down a pair of T1 WICs for tonight’s labs. oh well.

I was able to run through a few frame relay OSPF labs tonight. Had I bothered to read further into the chapter 5 labs, I’d have seen that they covered different operation modes for frame relay OSPF. I understand the concept of virtual links and how to configure them. We’re using MD5 authentication for OSPF at work, so I’m familiar with that configuration. I’m suddenly having a much easier time remembering LSA types, modes of operation, specifics for the modes, and other wonderful details.

I’ve made it through most of the Integrated IS-IS section in the authorized self study book. I’ll follow that up with the exam study book, and labs this weekend. Actually, I should try to make it through the redistribution chapters in both books before the weekend, as well. I’m expecting some training materials from Trainsignal this week. I’m going to load those videos onto my PDA and listen to them as I’m on my way to work every day, and use any free time I get at work to go through the videos some more. I WILL be ready for this exam by the end of this month.

Slightly OT: my wife wants to have one more little person sometime next year. If I’m going to do the IE, I’d better do it soon. I’m going to shoot for the written by December of this year, and pray that I get at least one attempt at the lab by the end of next summer.